Parasitical Analysis in the Built Environment: Scales of Complexity

Jun 14, 2017

As part of the larger project of architectural epistemology, this research seeks to bring new technologies to bear on the built environment, as unique means of generating, structuring, exchanging, and activating architectural knowledge. This research describes and tests the method of parasitical analysis of digitally modeled built environments. As an analytical method, it is fundamentally comparative, effectively constituting a means of “reading” a digital model by indirect means. In order to illustrate the method, the researcher considers a chronologically organized digital model of the Pruitt-Igoe housing project in St. Louis, Missouri. Due to its chronological organization, the model contains geometry representing two distinct conditions, i. e., “before” and “after” the demolition of historic structures and construction of the Pruitt-Igoe housing project. Each of these conditions is subjected to parasitical analysis and the results compared.

keywords: Parasite, Pruitt-Igoe, algorithmic design, architectural epistemology

Mike Christenson (North Dakota State University)
Presented at: 
ARCC 2017 Conference – Architecture of Complexity (Salt Lake City, UT)
Published & professionally reviewed by: 
Architectural Research Centers Consortium (ARCC)
University of Utah

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